The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has notified all designated Chief Collectors to coordinate with terminal operators and shipping lines to provide relief to importers whose consignments had got stuck at ports.
According to a statutory regulatory order (SRO) issued by the tax regulator, officers will now assist importers suffering due to regulatory changes and approvals from the Ministry of Commerce (MoC), State Bank of Pakistan (SBP), Pakistan Standard & Quality Control Authority (PSQCA), and Federal Board of Revenue (FBR).
Importers can approach the concerned collectors to get delay and detention certificates to get a partial waiver of charges. In case of any issues, the Chief collectors may be contacted.
As a result of the issuance of SRO 598(I)2022 dated 19 May 2022, a large number of consignments were held-up at different ports and land Customs stations across the country. Recently, after the issuance of Office Memorandum F.No.2(5)2021-IMP-III dated 22 July 2022 issued by the MoC, the clearance of such held-up consignments has begun.
As these consignments were held up for a long time, therefore, heavy demurrages and container charges have accumulated against these shipments at the concerned ports where they were held up. Consequently, the clearance process of these consignments is extremely slow-placed, and the relief given to the traders by the government is yet to be properly utilized.
Further, reports have been received that apart from the above-mentioned SRO, many other consignments have been held up due to obtaining requisite approvals from different regulators, including MoC, SBP, PSQCA, etc.
In light of the above, it has been directed that all the concerned Chief Collectors shall coordinate with relevant port authorities and shipping lines in their jurisdiction and chalk out a strategy to extend the maximum possible waiver from delay and detention charges to the traders so that the held-up consignments are cleared at the earliest. Furthermore, a detailed progress report on the matter shall be submitted to the tax regulator (FBR) within a week.